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Should we be concerned about TIAs?
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Egamlat posted:
My dad is 52 and in great health. Last year he had "spells" where he would go from being 'normal' to incoherent, disconnected speech (not making sense), being slightly off-balance, and later could not remember that point in time nor some events prior to it. A "spell" would last anywhere from 30 minutes to 12+ hours.

After much prodding, he went to a doctor. His general health is fantastic (blood pressure lower than mine!). They ran some scans on his brain and found nothing.

It had been a long time since he experienced one of these "spells" until few days ago. This one was slightly different than before, however. He was at a pizza place having dinner, and began "nodding off" to sleep. His girlfriend and my son kept trying to shake him awake, but he kept nodding. They finally got him home, and he wanted to go to bed - and he slept for 12 hours. When he woke up, he could not remember the entire previous day.

Should I be concerned that TIA's could be happening, even despite his good BP and cholesterol levels? Could something else be causing these kinds of events?

Thanks
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LynndaMaree responded:
Hi, my mother had the same symptoms Sunday 1/6/2013. She was standing in her room in a daze. I asked her to raise both arms above her head she couldn't do it. I asked her to smile for me. Couldn't do that either. Asked her who the President was aand what year and month and date she was born. Couldn't do aany of that. I dialed 911. They came and transported her to the ER. Her blood pressure was 222/178. I was terrified. I went out of town for two weeks and a family member was caring for her. Instead of giving her her blood pressure meds she gave her some herbs to lower it and that didn't work. She also said she was giving her her medications also. I wasn't here so I don't know if she did or not. the did a CT scan of her head, a chest x-ray and blood work and said everything was ok. They also gave her iv fluids with the blood pressure medication to get it down. Shen she left the hospital it was still 188/77. They did not keep her overnight. She is 87 hears of age and was in good health. It's been three days since that episode and her pressure is stablizing, thank God. It was 120/71 today. Now to get her up and walking again.She can walk but is very slow and wobbly. Before I went out of town she was fine. Decoration her Christmas tree and doing other things. I'll start exercising her arms and legs tomorrow. I have some three pound weight that I'll hold in her hands and help her do some arm raises and I'll help her do some leg lifts. Hope your dad gets better.
 
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Richard C Senelick, MD responded:
I don't think these "spells" are TIAs but, your father definitely needs to see a neurologist. Has he ever gone to the emergency room and had his blood checked during one of these "spells?" I would do this if it happens before you can see the neurologist.

I wonder if he is having a type of epileptic seizure called "complex partial seizures." People do not shake or fall down, but go into a "spell" where they can have unusual behaviors and have no memory of them. He may need an EEG ( brain wave test) and MRI scan of the brain.

You definitely need to pursue this. Good Luck.
After your stroke you may be experiencing a new normal, but remember what George Eliot said- It is never too late to be what you might have been. You still can achieve new goals.


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